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i will discuss the book and he
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is author of this very interesting book, "k blows top." and i will interview him even before when he wrote this book. so in this book sometime, some way about me and some chapters about me and i'll ask him. and while i agree to do it, because i found that this book is very interesting. brought us to 50 years ago where it was very different world, and where we only tried to adjust to each other, with huge power able to destroy each other with greater. and then in 1959, many things changed. khrushchev came to united states, and nikita khrushchev was my father and i am sergei
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khrushchev. and many interesting things there. political discussion. it was very serious talk, but also many funny things. and peter found all those funny things that he pulled them together in this book, showing how we can present the political person in the contemporary way you.and i'm trying to think at t time what i feel. and i was with my father on this trip. and for us, it was like -- for the christopher columbus discovery of america. and we discovered america for ourselves. we knew about america, but what we knew, america very different. we knew something that we learn
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from the 19th century america. and then this new world and we tried to find out how books, i found this book very interesting, but i just wanted detail of this book of the story, but from that aside, my first wish, was what you wrote this book. 50 years ago, visit from one leader of one country to the united states. i think there may be other leaders came here. sometimes khrushchev was eccentric. and president yeltsin was more eccentric, and when khrushchev came here, he just showed the time like this contemporary politician that we prefer to go to the common show, because most
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of the young people interest in this, maybe it was part of this. my father's behavior. maybe it was because it was back through the old war mentality on both sides, but not eliminate at that time in one visit, but it would change so why you wrote this? >> guest: i wrote the book because i happen to stumble upon the story of your father, nikita khrushchev's trip to the united states. which is now 50 years ago but when i stumble upon it, it was only 30, 35 years old. a writer at the time for "people" magazine. and it was a job, i was a rewrite man. so i had to rewrite things on mondays and tuesdays and wednesdays but on thursdays for thursdays and fridays i did have much to do so i would amuse myself by reading the clip file
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for the time life library. and one day i had read somewhere that nikita khrushchev has come to the united states and had been refused admission to disneyland. and i thought to myself, that can't possibly be true. why wouldn't they let him into disneyland? so i called downstairs to the time life library and asked for the clips on his trip to the united states. about tammuz are they called me back and said, are you sure you want all these clips? there's an awful lot of them. and i said, sure, why not? so a messenger came up with a huge cart, full of big file clips, each one as big as a pillow one for each day of the trip, it was a 15 day trip. and i picked up the first one dumped it out of my desk and started reading the clips. and i was fascinated by the story of it.
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it was funny. it was a little scary. it eliminated the era, the cold war era in both its comedy and it's scary aspects. and more than that, it was a road trip across america in the 1950s. so it illuminated what america was like in. so i just became hooked on that, and i read all those clips, xeroxed the whole bunch of them. and file them away for future reference. then i began reading your father's memoirs about the trip. and he wrote a lot about it, and his memoirs, as you know, were very human, very funny. he was wonderfully earthy memoirs. and then i started reading other people's memoirs of the trip, and i just became probably the world's only khrushchev in
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america by. and so a few years ago, i was writing for the "washington post," and i realized that the 50th anniversary was coming, and if i was ever going to write the book i should do it now. so i did. and now it's out. and it's called "k blows top." the reason for the title is it's the third line of a three line headline from the new york daily news. the full headline was denied to her of disneyland, "k blows top." so he really was not allowed to go to disneyland. we could probably get into why later. >> host: but your book is very different because usually book filled with political analysis, discussion and trying to push us on all these other cold war. and you're talking about the detail, that i remember, because
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i was part of this khrushchev entourage. it stopped, and he was not really scared. when i was talking the other day in our library, i was scared. and then he lost his gold medal that was in train station traveling from los angeles to san francisco, and he was so happy that some american found it. it did not stolley. he returned it, khrushchev, it is your metal, please take a. and then it was his discussion with mr. spiros told i am
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self-made man. here in america, i am poor, greek boy, came here and now i am the president of the greek film company. and my father told -- what big deal. i was poor, and now i am prime minister of great country. we are the same. so it was all the time, discussion. and then he disappeared in san francisco because he decided to go to the walk in the come and deliver and just waiting. can you tell somesuch stories. because i am interviewing you, not you interviewing me now. >> guest: maybe we can do a bit of both. i emphasize a lot of the comedy of the trip as opposed to the diplomatic negotiations, although they are in there also. are the political rhetoric, which can get a little dull. because there was so much zany comedy that i thought
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illustrated the strangeness of the cold war, which was the first time in human history when you had these two nations that could annihilate each other very quickly. and that caused an interesting psychology that i grew up with, and that's what i was interested in it. among the amusing part of the book that i liked was you've mentioned your father and the discussion of who had risen higher from a lower beginning. that was very funny at the time. and then shortly after he said that, someone handed him a note saying he was going to be allowed to go to disneyland. and he continued with the discussion at hand, and then kind of let off a little steam about not being allowed to go to disneyland. he said what, is there an outbreak of cholera there? have gangsters taken over the place? do you think he was being funny
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on purpose? >> host: i think yes, because when we talk about the going to disneyland, it is very different feeling in america and in the soviet union. really we did note nothing about disney land. we know nothing about existed. somebody put down on the agenda and we have to go. but my father, he was ready to fight back. so saying not allowed to go, he asked why, why? i have to go there. i will go there. and it was another story that we are talking about that you mentioned, remember what my father discussion with -- i think it was the director of the cia when he offered him to exchange least of our spies.
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>> guest: he said they share the same spies and they should probably pay them once for the same information. he was a very funnyman i gather. >> host: but he believed, no trust there to say in human intelligence, as he told me, americans doing the same as our spies. so why do we pay them twice? and it was all these stories about khrushchev promise, you know when nixon went to the soviet union in 59 to open the exhibition in july 24, he wrote especially looks through all these problems of khrushchev choosing and trying to find a sense. and he -- he was good as it was
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translated, because one of the translations was show you, that mean nothing. but in russia some joking, and he's looking to translator how he'd look at this. when they adjusted to this, he used a nether joke that each snide breaks his own. and then translate later, translated that each snake is his own master and then another phrase his own. and another joe, do you know where the crayfish spend their winter? >> guest: no, i don't. >> host: and why do you have to know this? what does it mean? [laughter] >> host: and rush it also means nothing. it is some threatening, but i show you with a spending with me and i will put you in difficult
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position. so what you remember about all the things, this exchange, this broad discussion and dinners, other dinners in new york city and then in washington press club? >> guest: you mentioned the proverbs. nixon had heard from william randolph first, who had interviewed khrushchev earlier that he spoke with all these kind of peasant proverbs. so hearst told nixon you better get some proverbs. so whereas your father's offers i get for things he had heard all his life, with nixon, he was actually sitting down studying them. so it was kind of illustrating nixon's awkwardness as opposed to khrushchev's naturalness as a performer. and of course, nixon did accomplish some proverbs, some of which we cannot actually repeat on the air here.
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>> host: but it is one thing that really may feel a little bit irritating in your book, that when you're talking about father, my father, you name him dictator all the time. dictator here, and of course, that he was the most unlikely tourist in the united states. and in reality, my question, of course he was the leader, but same time after stalin tierney, he tried to change this rule, and he was elected as the party leader. and it is misunderstand because party leader and the soviet union, it was not party leader because there was only one party. and all spectrum of the politics
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on the right to the left is in one party. and the party leader like a president. you can change the system, make it multiparty system. it will be different system. and he tried to do it, and he tried to introduce different aspects. by the way, he learned it from his discussions about how to terms. and he asked him to president eisenhower, why will you not run for third term? and present answered him that it will be against our constitution. he told, you can change constitution because you are very popular. >> guest: that's a good example of why i refer to him as a dictator. maybe by the standards of stalinist russia, he was not a dictator, or was a benevolent dictator. but by american standards he was certainly a dictator. and there's an illustration in the book of why i say that. would khrushchev was being
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driven around los angeles, he saw a woman on the street dressed in all black, carrying a sign that said, death to khrushchev, butcher of hungry. and he turned to henry cabot lodge was his tour guide was the american ambassador to the un, he said, what is this woman and what is ursine? and lodge said, well, mr. chairman, she is someone who doesn't agree with your foreign policy. and your father said, well, why would eisenhower invite me here only to have this woman standing here in sultanate? and lodge said, wait a minute, do you really think that eisenhower invited you here and made sure that you would see this woman standing with the sign? and your father said, in the soviet union, she would not be there and less i've wanted her to be there. so that kind of illustrates that he was more of a dictator than we are certainly used to hear
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among our american presence is. >> host: you know of course you name the dictator, so it's different use of this word. women talk about this story of this woman that can be true, it was not something that he did not think the president send her here and he don't understand. understand, american policy even. if it was, of course, different from russia. because in russia, the khrushchev time, it was beginning a demonstration and protesting. and i remember it was the wife of the ambassador thompson telling the story, demonstration, they don't ever, something in the american embassy and then throwing eggs, and she went out and poked his head out as a policeman.
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when you think everything was not. what are you talking about, half an hour. [laughter] >> host: so of course, it was different but of course, down from a little bit insulting, but i understand it is different cultures. and we can turn to some other things now. may be about little bit serious things here can. >> guest: okay. >> host: about relations between khrushchev and eisenhower. and when we talk about these and we talk about the invitation, it was many discussion that really, the white house, if khrushchev do this and this and this, and then we will invite him.
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not understanding khrushchev, because khrushchev want to be treated as equal. and if you put conditions of him, he would never, and maybe we will go deeply in the cold weather and strong relations. so what is your feeling of all the things digesting to each other like because khrushchev didn't understand how eisenhower control his country, and white house how to treat your counterpart. but is happening now to. i was very surprised when the present administration said we will not negotiate with other countries and less agree with is. in this case, we don't need a state department. >> guest: i thought it was interesting during the last presidential campaign when an issue is made of obama's willingness to negotiate with
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the iranians. and mccain said, we should never negotiate unless there are preconditions. of course, i can get invite khrushchev here and there were no preconditions. so it's not like it hasn't happened before. no one seemed to mention that during the campaign. maybe that's been forgotten now, but what happened is that president eisenhower was eager to solve the berlin crisis. of course, the west and the soviet union shared -- >> host: what is this berlin crisis? i don't think i remember this. >> guest: many may not remove her, but berlin was after world war ii divided between the three western zones occupied by united states and britain and france, and an eastern zone occupied by the soviet union. those were the four powers that had liberated berlin in world war ii. west berlin was in the middle of the communist east berlin.
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so that made for kind of an awkward. >> host: east germany khrushchev east germany, is getting. so that made for an awkward relationship. and of course, stalin had cut off the road to berlin. at one point in 1948, and it was the famous berlin airlift. in 1958, khrushchev had made some menacing remarks about berlin and gave a six-month ultimatum about having some kind of treaty about the future of berlin. and the six months had passed, and nothing happened. and the soviet union and the three western powers were negotiating about it in geneva at the time. eisenhower hoped to break the stalemate, and he hope to do so by issuing this invitation to khrushchev to come to united states. the invitation was written out and delivered to a soviet official by an american state department official named murphy. murphy was instructed to tell
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his soviet counterpart that the invitation had strings attached, that any event that the talks in geneva resulted in a plan, and other words if they came to fruition, and then khrushchev would be invited to the united states. unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately as it turned out, murphy either didn't understand or for god to tell his soviet counterpart that strings were attached. so the invitation was delivered to khrushchev without any strings attached. he read it and he needed he said sure, i'd love to go to the united states. to talk to eisenhower. in the meantime, and i also travel around for 10 days to two weeks? so that's why the trip happened. and perhaps as you say, it's better that the strings were not attached because it probably
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would never have taken place, if the strings were attached, right? >> host: yet, because it was very easy to result the berlin problem. for the united states recognize east germany as the subject of the international law and member of the united nations. it will be no problem. the problem that soviet union and my father did push through that we are the world leader, and we have our allies and we have to be respected and recognized as equal. and you know that americans not want to recognize anybody as equal, so say no. all the problem as i remember was about who will check american papers. it will be east german official over soviet official? america's will never show our papers to east german officials. and they can quarrel over this
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forever. so i think murphy was very good diplomat at. [laughter] >> host: i don't think diplomats are getting something. but i think in his mind was it will be better to our relations if khrushchev will come without conditions. and of course, it was really better for these relations when making. and when you talk about this long trips, it was part of the time. i remember each visitor to the soviet union have a long trip around the soviet union. president have to go to the end of his. and i think is very useful because at the time, where we were very far from the possibility reach agreement, it was not very useful to sit in the white house or in a state department, and repeating the
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same word for the one side and knowing what the other side would answer, and we have such people that forever that they be in meeting that it was much better when you travel and can look in the eyes of the people, and understanding what is there. so mr. murphy was, i think, very good person on this. >> guest: yes, if he did that on purpose, he did not mention that to eisenhower. who gave quite a tongue lashing and the white house. >> host: because in this case, he defied. no one wants to defy, especially from the state department. >> guest: that's true. tricky when your father received the invitation, he writes in his memoirs that he was invited to camp david to talk to eisenhower, and he did not know what can't david was. and he asked his various aides in moscow, and they did know and
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they asked the embassy in washington, and they didn't know either. is that true? is it possible that somehow they didn't know what kant david was? >> host: i don't think too many americans knew what it means at the time. they don't know in my presence. when he said and looking schedule, and he -- he wanted to be treated as equal. so he was very precise looking that he was really, he did not care. and he asked why they don't want to speak with me at white house, and try to bring me to summer camp? may be humiliation. indicated his mind when it was first not recognized soviet union and then, invite the soviet delegation to princess island near istanbul and then they send their stray dogs.
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so it was true. and out. >> guest: it's a good example of how much both sides did understand of each other at that time. >> host: and now we are are coming to the and we will come back in some minutes. >> guest: okay. >> "after words" and several others c-span programs are available for download as podcast. more with peter golson and sergei khrushchev in a moment. >> every year the national press club host and author night. you talk about the culture of death in russia right now. you want to talk about that? >> sure. the best line, the best way to understand i think what's going on in russia and what's been going on for the last hour years is to look through the lens of
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murder, and what i argue is, is that under vladimir putin, that there is a culture, a structure in which murder and death occurs with impunity, and it goes on with the indifference of the russian people. and i call that the culture of death. spent why did that occur? why don't the russian people know or care? >> they do no. but it's been going on for centuries. they've learned -- i track it back to ivan the terrible, and people are so accustomed to hardship in their lives, to death, to famine, to all kinds of -- to all kinds of terrible hardships that we never encounter. and so if there is something that happens, something to someone very close to them, to
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your relative, to your mother, to your aunt, to your daughter, you care. if it's a murder, of someone next door, and of the village next-door, maybe you could care, but you don't care and you go on with your life at. >> you profile six lives and deaths of six different russians in the book. do you want to talk about one? >> sure. what about paul. i think that's a good one. he is a good one because he's an aberration. paul was the editor-in-chief of forbes, forbes russia in addition dicicco up in new york. his background is russian aristocrat, totally romantic about russia. he went back there thinking that he was going to live the life that is all goals, that his grandfather described as he was growing up.
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and what he found was the chaos of russia under yeltsin. so that when putin became president he chaired. is a huge fan of juden and he described them that way in his articles. in forbes. then when he was murdered, this was very dramatic. how good this guy, who was such a fan of putin, be murdered? and putin himself in the other murders that i described, putin totally indifferent about these deaths. and even in his interview about the death of. [inaudible] , another subject whose murder i described, he was derisive about her. but with paul, he actually went to dork when he was in new york after his death, he visited with the widow and he expressed his sympathy.
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and what does this tell me and what it tells one is that the culture of death is bigger than putin. is even bigger than putin. >> "after words" with peter carlson and sergei khrushchev continues. >> host: we are back, discussing the peter carlson book, "k blows top," about nikita khrushchev visit to the united states 50 years ago in september 1959. and he just wrote this book for this university. and it's very interesting book and repeating this and i advise everybody to read this. and we talk about funny stories and we talk about the funny stories, but it was not only to her of the united states. but i think was very important very important because when we look, when i read about
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president roosevelt, that when he traveled around the united states and looking from the windows, and he understanding how people dealing, how must either car or back yard, and khrushchev like to travel around soviet union to talk to the people. it was the same here, because the soviet union and live under the fear that american can attack us every mullah. and if we live under the fear that the soviet union. >> host: i know. but it was discussion in the congress. it was part of his negative thing of democracy, how many cities we have destroyed, how many weapons we have. strategic air force, and until it's too late we have to attack the soviet union.
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wide, but i understand now that when we discussing, we attack their nuclear sites, would we allow to attack these. and when khrushchev, we were looking at operations for the war, before war we go to germany. hitler germany, said each second, male person will be in uniform. may be in the soviet union also, many people in uniform. there's not many people in american uniforms. >> guest: is that something that surprising? >> host: he never talked about this, but of course it was important, maybe not surprised, i get show the atmosphere, show the atmosphere that i remember this data was in the center, in his travel by train from los angeles to san francisco, and it was man with big sign, freedom
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to kazakhstan. and i remember this because i was surprised that america knows something about kazakhstan. >> guest: very few did. >> host: but then outside and there was khrushchev, and he smiled. it was very interested. but also, it was discussion in the camp david, that different atmosphere, because it was 2 liters, flash leaders in the united states and soviet union who were in the war and who knew the war. and my father, even could not voice about the war because he could not sleep after that because everything in this war is wrong, because war is much
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more dirty, and he told me when i'm sitting, he was in the front military consul, and listening to -- counting the division until the first day we would lose 50000 people, second day may be 70000 people. and sitting there listening, it is young boys who sitting there, they don't know. the same with the president, because he -- my father was not fully responsible for this. the president was responsible or i think it was most peaceful people in the world who ready to fight back, but then they were wanting to start the war. and they felt very complicated, can we talk about this, what they discussed and camp david? >> guest: well, they discussed of course berlin, which was what
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ike want to talk about. and they also talked about disarmament, which are father wanted to talk about. your father was eager to spend less money on armaments and more on consumer goods. and ike would've liked to do that to. both were wary of course of disarming unilaterally. and they came to no agreement on disarmament, but i think ike, ike revealed later in a personal letter that he wrote to mcmillan, the prime minister of england, that he thought your father was sincere in wanting to cut back on arms. and when your father returns to russia after this, he did cut back on the military budget, which was not a pleasant easy thing for him to do. but i think at camp david, they came to like each other. would you say that's true? you talk to father about it.
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>> host: difficult to say they liked each other, but i think that they can trust each other. why my father was so much related by when the american spy plane flew over soviet union next year on may 1, 1960. they showed the plane, and he betrayed the. but it was the conversation about relations between military and the funding. remember this? in your book lacks. >> guest: yes. as khrushchev and eisenhower walked around camp david, khrushchev said to him something like, i don't have the exact low quote, but something like, my generals come to me and they say, we need such and such, because the americans have that. and so i say, we don't have anybody. and they say the americans have it. and if we don't have it, the
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americans will be able to attack us. so i find the money and i buy it. and eisenhower said, you know, that's exactly what happens to be. generals come to me and they say we need such and such. and i say we don't have enough money for it. and they say, well, the russians have it so we need it. so i find the money for it. so it was the two of them realize this crazy escalating madness of the arms race. >> host: the president at that time, as i remember it, he looked at my father and said maid will cite a personal treaty between two of us between our military's. >> guest: your father also attended a meeting with a bunch of capitalists in a new york apartment who had been ambassador of soviet union and the who of course was from a hugely wellfleet american capital assembly. and when he had been talking to your father, earlier he had
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said, your father had said that america was run by a small circle of powerful capitalist pig and he said, that's not true. so he decided for some reason to convince khrushchev that this was a true by inviting him to meet a bunch of rich american capitalist. and it was kind of funny because they all started telling khrushchev we have no power. what we say doesn't go. if we ask for something, the congress immediately votes against it. which was, of course, pure baloney. and your father recognized that and said, to the, i guess that means i'm talking to the poor relations of america. and they all laughed. the funny thing to me was that they thought, i guess it's silly, that they really didn't have much power, and that the capitalists were not lobbying for greater armaments, which
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khrushchev believe. but the day khrushchev came out with a disarmament plan at the un, the stock market plunged, particularly the companies that created armaments. which seemed to prove khrushchev's point. and then a year later when eisenhower was leaving the white house, he made his famous speech on tv about the military-industrial complex, and how it was unprecedented american life, and how this combination of generals and military contractors had too much power and was exerting too much influence in american life. which is basically what khrushchev had been attacked or asked babyface rainsy agreed on that point. >> host: yeah, they agree on this point. and they think, last people because when khrushchev was out
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of power in 1964, the military endeavors are complex took over. it was not an american threat. it was not even the president reagan star wars initiative. it was just want more and more and more. they brought to soviet union, i think many things happening now in this country, especially with missile defense. i'm not talking about russian problems. i'm talking and large, cannot build up what you are spending more and more and more money, because you think that you need them. and then you fully protect yourself, and then you fighting, as my father told. >> guest: and our budget at the time your father came to, the military budget was $40 million. now it's $620 billion. we now spin in america just a
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little bit less for defense than all of the other country in the world combined. yesterday as we talked, there was debate in the senate in which a large number of senators wanted to fund a program that the pentagon says no, no, no. , we have enough and 22 planes. and the senators who have factories in their state were trying to get him to make more even though the pentagon didn't even want them. ultimately, they lost but they came close to winning. so it does show that the military advisor complex is alive and well. >> host: that is to. but from other side, what you're feeling, they have similar background, two old men with all their wisdom. but from the other side, mutual understanding, but they were children of their time, and they live in that role that was created by stalin and churchill with the iron curtain and all
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this cold war mentality. what you think really could reach agreement of some years or not? >> guest: well, they fail to really reach agreement on anything at camp david. they didn't have much time, perhaps they would have reached an agreement if they had been here longer. i think, and i wanted to ask you this question because many people have asked after reading the book, in the book i say that when khrushchev went home, things looked good. the relationship had improved. he cut his military budget. he invited ike to come to the soviet union, and ike was going to. he even had a golf course built for president eisenhower to play. things looked good, and of course as you mentioned earlier, we sent the u2 over the soviet union. it was shot down, and that kind of threw a monkeywrench into the
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relationship. let me ask you the question that a lot people have asked me, and that is, if we had not had that u2 flight, or if the soviet union had not succeeded in shooting it down, do you think we would have had a detente earlier? >> host: for sure, if you will not send this u2 flight. no, i am serious, because especially in this time, because this overflying soviet union started just after second world war. and of course, for khrushchev it was relation that they did it and really that it was not only send this plane. but also the state department told after they shot that they will repeat this until we build
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our national interest. even when president cancels all these flights. really, he didn't know how to deal with these. and here, i am coming to another question. i was surprised and interested that the vice president nixon had his own agenda, and was starting with the kitchen debate that you showed your picture, famous picture that khrushchev with nixon point his finger at khrushchev. and i look at my pictures and i find the same picture where khrushchev point his finger to nixon. it is part of this policy.
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it finished peacefully because khrushchev has this humor come he didn't take this very serious. but then it was repeated, repeated in the united states, and culminated in san francisco where the mayor of san francisco brought khrushchev to the anti-street changing the road of his entourage, did not allow him to go to the disneyland. and khrushchev asked him why? he told him not secure. and he said for my own. and he answered, did they throw the tomato at the chico police? and khrushchev asked, that he hoped it was a fresh tomato. so we have this hoax and all aside from one side, it was eisenhower and nixon, from the other it was the mayor of san
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francisco. and khrushchev, mayor of los angeles. and met him before he died in 2000, and khrushchev had told me that president eisenhower hold him in the middle of the night and told that son of a, meatballs, that all of my foreign policies were destroyed. and he destroyed. >> guest: being friendly. >> host: being friendly. and remember what you wrote that he told khrushchev arrived, gone away. and khrushchev was very tall, and he looked at him and told where is your boss, asking my father? my father thinking another publication. and khrushchev look at him and say, we are pretending we are
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really run all this does is. my boss showing his wife, your boss with roses. and then they change all these think. and it was also khrushchev, the same relations would he have to start the work in united states. and my father, think that he is here, but he was here. we will lose half a billion people, but still we would win. >> guest: and that is one of the most chilling things i've ever read and your father's memoirs were he and mao are walking in beijing and mao says i'm not worried about losing a half a million people, as long as we went. >> host: so it is many cases that we are talking that the u2 flight was not occasion, that somebody wanted to blow up all
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these speedy of camp david. >> guest: do you think now -- when your father was at camp david, before that u2 flight was shot down, there have been others as you mentioned. and of course, your father knew about them. he did not ask ike at camp david. he could have said, mr. president, will you stop flying over my country. why did he not do that? >> host: when i was hit by you i buy eye, and you know that time by time, brought in my apartment, and i will ask you, peter, why are you rubbing my apartment? maybe you will not rob it a second time. my father felt humiliating when they ask him to send protest to the united states. he told them, my presence, to the foreign minister, we cannot
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shot because it is too high, flying to hi. and i am just hearing, reading this state department, how they laughing at me. the u2 fly pushed these arms race, development of all these antiaircraft weapons. but americans knew, i hope the new that the soviets was able to shoot it. maybe they saying that these two old men went too far, because my father knows he was ready to sign the treaty. and again, eisenhower also wanted to do it in the last encore of his term. maybe someone would want it to be some. i know it was many people who thought that he was not in soviet interest. >> guest: you mentioned earlier
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the incident where mayor paulson insulted khrushchev in los angeles. then khrushchev got mad and threaten to go home. the dinner ended in a moment of anxiety. and then khrushchev went upstairs to his hotel room and gathered his aides and you around him, and went into kind of a tantrum about the mayor and about this incident, hoping that he was being overheard on a blog. could you tell us that story? >> host: you can tell this story. >> guest: you are their. >> host: before you ask a question, i tell you the story about. >> guest: , well, he was so convinced that the americans were bugging his hotel room that he figured if he exploded with anger, they would be listening and they would change their policy. now as i -- i asked the state
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department and the fbi if they were bugging the rooms, and they told me no. i don't know whether that's true or not, but they did change their policy after that. but perhaps because gromyko went and talked to large. i don't know whether they were bugging them or not. but khrushchev assumed they were. >> host: the routine of all these people, of what they did it. and from this politics to some personal questions not so many times. you just writing that khrushchev have the appetite for eating everything in the breakfast, and you making fun of these and khrushchev explained this, that he taking a day off of it died because he had the kidney problem and it does not allow him to be. and it was i know it would true. he thought that when i visit, i can eat, and he was good to try
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everything. try this, try this, very different food. and i remember in the meeting, he asked him to bring him to the airport for the dinner. it was stinky fruit that could be eaten and be tasted, like rotten eggs, mixed with rotten boiled oil. [laughter] >> guest: sounds great. >> host: so he tried to do this. and also your stories when you talking that he tried to check everything to find lockers in the train station, because in soviet union, he heard line to give your luggage, you're looking supermarket. >> guest: he was interested, write? he was interested. >> host: any idea, he was more interested in computer.
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because you have self-service and you have no waiters, like all diners at the time of the soviet union. >> guest: so he does move a more efficient way to feed workers at the noontime meal, write? they would be able to eat faster and get back to work and want when they are looking in the computer, you can't understand that i cannot understand is computer better than that computer or this computer that other computer. so here, it is very clear. and he liked just to take this examples from everywhere, especially he repeated all the time in united states, routinely in soviet union, americans much ahead of us. we have to learn from them, how to effectively manage the economy, and then after that, we will go forward and we will say goodbye from our trained.
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>> guest: was he surprised at the amount of affluence here? did that surprise them, or was he already a winner of that? >> host: of what? >> guest: of the affluence he saw. >> host: really, i don't know this english were. i'm sorry, i'm russian. >> guest: the widespread wealth of america that people -- ordinary people had cars, that kind of thing. >> host: no, no, no. turkey was not surprised. we knew this but americans live much better. why the american in this way failed in moscow. because they wanted to show the american life, the department store. but for people, department store, you can buy this. you cannot buy this. it's useless. so when i asked my friends what they remember, nobody remember this. nobody remember the american model home.
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everybody remember pepsico. they didn't like his. the taste of maybe it was not so much taste, like she waxed. but was different because my friend told not alcoholic beverage made from dried bread and was difficult to because they couldn't drink pepsi-cola, but when when they visited my father's country house, my father offered him, it is such murky, brown, liquid that i don't know reminded of something not very oedipal. >> guest: your father seem to like the pepsi that he had at that their. >> host: no, he didn't like the pepsi, but after this discussion with nixon, he wanted just to close it down and, people, he
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behave the same as my wife. he was 12 years old at the time. i asked him what he remember from this exhibition that he told him i remember, it was very hard, and i was very good looking girl, so they give me pepsi-cola. they want us to make photograph. and i tried, and they like it. yes, i like it. even though i don't like it. but i would not agree it was like shoe wax. it was too sweet and too dark. >> guest: the americans thought this was very significant because the communist parties of western europe spent a lot of time attacking coca-cola. they use coca-cola as a symbol of america. and so when khrushchev seems to enjoy pepsi-cola, the criminologist of american newspapers thought this was a very significant event. obvious to, you don't think is quite that significant.
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but it's another example of how the two countries didn't understand each other, sort of fumbled trying to get clues about each other. >> host: different cultures. just what would happen. and of course, what i want to say and ask you what you would recommend. khrushchev now what do disneyland, and i also went to disneyland because i don't want to, how to say, the mythology of disneyland in america going. khrushchev never, then he was shouting, by the way, he never that capitalism, communism, capitalism. but he said this word it is before. there was no at all.

Book TV After Words
CSPAN January 1, 2010 3:00pm-4:00pm EST

Peter Carlson Education. (2009) Peter Carlson ('K Blows Top') interviewed by Sergei Khrushchev.

TOPIC FREQUENCY America 18, United States 17, Soviet Union 13, Berlin 11, Russia 10, Eisenhower 8, Us 7, San Francisco 5, Nikita Khrushchev 4, New York 4, Murphy 4, Sergei Khrushchev 3, Disneyland 3, Washington 3, Pepsi 2, Pentagon 2, Pepsi-cola 2, Paul 2, Un 2, Khrushchev 2
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